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Discussion Starter #1
I replaced my old steering box with one from a JY today and now it is pulling to the right and I have to hold the steering wheel off to the left to keep it driving straight. If I let the steering wheel go, it returns to center but bronco wanders quickly off to the right. How do I fix this? Prior to changing the box, it tracked straight but had slop. 1996

I eventually plan to get a newer box but would like it to drive straight till then. Thanks.
 

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YEAH!! Have fun wih that!!! I have fought a "left pull" for a couple years. Let go of the wheel and the truck will cross the centerline into oncoming traffic. The Ho has been to 6 or 7 different shops in attempts to diagnose and repair with no luck. I have searched and searched trying to read every thread and bit of advise I could find. It all started after a frontend rebuild including a steering gear and new tires. I have given up on it now and just deal with it. The local Ford dealer made the best correction after seeing every other shop in town. The tech said that the caster was not perfect and he was able to get it to drive better but not perfect. Good luck, keep us posted.
 

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If the steering box was installed with everything properly centered and the box is in good shape then the steering gear should not have any effect on whether the truck pulls one way or the other.

Granted if the box or the steering joint is worn or has play then you may feel like it wanders due to the excess slack.

Vehicle pulling one way or the other will generally be either an alignment problem or could be a brake problem, actually even tires can effect it to a point as well.

I will say that the front ends on our Bronco's takes a tech that understands and knows what he is doing to get them right. In my area there are probably 50 shops or more that do front end alignments and out of those there are two shops that I would say know how to properly diagnose and correctly align the independent Ford front ends.

Even out of those two one would be a superior first choice over the other and if that shop cannot get it right well I probably give up on any one getting it right. That guy is that good!

So regardless of whether the vehicle has been in one shop or ten that does not mean that someone has worked on it that can properly diagnose the problems.

A good alignment shop will not take your money for an alignment telling you it is done and send you out the door with a truck that still pulls one way or the other. A good shop if it still pulls will tell you why it is still pulling and what is causing the problem and tell you what needs to be done to rectify the problem including a bent frame or whatever.

You will hear that your best bet is to avoid the "chain store" alignment shops and find an independent mom and pop type shop that has been in business forever with a great reputation. Heed this information, the chain stores usually have younger inexperienced techs, grade their techs job performance on how many jobs they get out the door a day or how many dollars of income they generate for the company.

The really good independants usually have much older more experienced techs that have forgotten more than the chain store techs know. These independents stay busy and in business due to word of mouth of the quality of their work and turning out something that is not right can negatively affect their future business so they will not let shoddy work out of the door.

The first choice shop that I use in my area is a small operation that the guy has been doing alignments for 50 or so years. His attention to detail is amazing and his services are fairly priced and well demanded in the area. Usually he is booked for at least a month in advance but well worth waiting for.

If you can find a shop like this in your area book them, be prepared financially to fix or replace anything they tell you they need to do and enjoy being able to drive your vehicle down the highway with your hands off the wheel.

Alignment shops are a dime a dozen but a good alignment shop is a dying commodity. A PROPERLY ALIGNED Bronco with no other mechanical problems will track straight down the road!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for replies. It was tracking straight prior to putting the "new" box on. Anyone else with some advice. I saw somewhere here that adjusting the tie rod sleeves may help. The box came off an older ford truck so maybe the center is a bit different
 

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X2 on vfourmax. A mechanic is supposed to diagnose a problem, and be able to fix it, if he takes your money.
 

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Thanks for replies. It was tracking straight prior to putting the "new" box on. Anyone else with some advice. I saw somewhere here that adjusting the tie rod sleeves may help. The box came off an older ford truck so maybe the center is a bit different
Adjusting the tie rod sleeves will affect or change the toe out, therefore changing the front end alignment.

If your truck tracked straight prior to the changing of only the steering gear box then it stands to reason that either the gearbox you installed has a problem or is defective or something concerning the install went amiss.

I would not at this point go changing other things that affect your alignment but would probably get a different gearbox and install that and see if your problem goes away.

Any other changes at this point would only tend to cause you more headaches trying to sort out what is going on. Your truck tracked straight prior to the gearbox change so changing anything with the alignment will probably not help but in reality make it where something else would have to be readjusted to be right.

I think you had said you installed a used steering gear so possibly the previous owner was "fixing" slack in the steering box by tightening down the adjustment screw and the gear you have now is actually damaged from improper adjustment attempts.

Don't let one change that doesn't give the results expected snowball into having multiple problems by changing other things trying to fix what the original change screwed up.
 

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i had a guy back in ny. mark from kresgies, best front end shop ever. than he retired. i used to go to ford and they would screw my alignment up every time, bring it down to mark and he would fix the alignment and adjust the steering wheel (i'm guessing the steering gear) and the truck would be awsome for a long while. its been about ten years now since he rebuilt my front end and its still better than ford ever did. a good shop for alignments is priceless and worth every penny. the funny thing about mark is he used the old school tech. he had a bar to mark the center of the wheel with a pc of chalk to see how it tracked as he turned the tire. so simple, no computer's in the shop at all:beer Mark if your out there i wish you all the best in your retirement and the best to you and yours:thumbup bottom line is find a guy that knows what he is doing with the front end and when you do take care of him.
 

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i had a guy back in ny. mark from kresgies, best front end shop ever. than he retired. i used to go to ford and they would screw my alignment up every time, bring it down to mark and he would fix the alignment and adjust the steering wheel (i'm guessing the steering gear) and the truck would be awsome for a long while. its been about ten years now since he rebuilt my front end and its still better than ford ever did. a good shop for alignments is priceless and worth every penny. the funny thing about mark is he used the old school tech. he had a bar to mark the center of the wheel with a pc of chalk to see how it tracked as he turned the tire. so simple, no computer's in the shop at all:beer Mark if your out there i wish you all the best in your retirement and the best to you and yours:thumbup bottom line is find a guy that knows what he is doing with the front end and when you do take care of him.
Your post brought a big smile across my face as the guy I use is the same way, no computers or computer readouts and he has been using the same equipment for the last 40 years that I know of.

I think one of the big differences is this guy just knows and understands suspensions and steering inside and out. Also his knowledge, his understanding of what changes affect what is immense and not guess work.

Also over the years he use to do a lot of suspension work on round track cars so again he understands how spring rates and and different geometries affect a front end and I think that is one reason as well that he is so good when it comes to dealing with the lifted independant front suspensions.

My guy actually also retired about 3 years ago but he is still open. He still does work for customers that have dealt with him for years but basically is not taking on any new customers.

I picked up another Bronco a few months ago which I will lift next spring. He has already agreed to totally go through and rebuild and align the front end for me which is a relief as I know that even lifted it will actually drive better than stock.

Not trying to hi jack the thread here but it does show just how important the RIGHT alignment shop is gold to find and how they seem to be getting to be fewer and fewer. Seems that maybe this sort of proves that it is not the fancy computer alignment racks that make the difference but the guy under the vehicle changing the settings that actually gives the desired results.
 

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i had a guy back in ny. mark from kresgies, best front end shop ever. than he retired. i used to go to ford and they would screw my alignment up every time, bring it down to mark and he would fix the alignment and adjust the steering wheel (i'm guessing the steering gear) and the truck would be awsome for a long while. its been about ten years now since he rebuilt my front end and its still better than ford ever did. a good shop for alignments is priceless and worth every penny. the funny thing about mark is he used the old school tech. he had a bar to mark the center of the wheel with a pc of chalk to see how it tracked as he turned the tire. so simple, no computer's in the shop at all:beer Mark if your out there i wish you all the best in your retirement and the best to you and yours:thumbup bottom line is find a guy that knows what he is doing with the front end and when you do take care of him.

Had my 02 mustang GT vert aligned this way, ZERO bump steer(2 1/4drop) !!! Saw the chalk and said WTF !!!

Now studing this dark art as we speak at my shop !
 

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I'm probably the last guy you want to ask for help from, but... The pitman arm is keyed where it attaches to the drag link and the gear box. The steering wheel is keyed (at least my 90 is) where it bolts to the steering column, but I'm not sure if the intermediate shaft is keyed where the flex coupling attaches to the top of the Gear box. I think it is but my manual doesn't say.

So if everything is keyed you couldn't have installed the flex coupling or pitman arm incorrectly. That leaves either the gear box isn't installed square to the frame, or the gear box is manufactured incorrectly. Since everything is keyed then when the gearbox is connected to the pitman arm, the end at the intermediate shaft must line up with the flex coupling or you'd have to move the wheel to get the shaft lined up to the gear. So, I'm guessing it is possible for the gear box not to be manufactured to line up with the keys on either end.

Maybe someone with more knowledge, can step in and tell me I'm full of bs. My Bronco isn't here or I'd go out and look at the position of the flexcoupling and pitman arm when the wheels are pointed straight ahead so you'd have something to compare yours to. My Ford manual says Clear view adjustment is done with frontend alignment. So I guess the other option is that your alignment was off, but a sloppy gear box gave you more play in the steering wheel.
 

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I wonder if you have the issue I was having just tonight. I started the Sag pump upgrade but could not find the right high pressure hose so I had to re install the old pump. I did drain the system almost entirely of fluid, replaced with power steering fluid, not ATF.

Earlier this evening I had to make a hard K turn and turned the wheel almost max to the right. After that the steering started pulling in both direction. When it was drifting right I had to compensate 1/4 clock turn to the left. Turn the wheel slightly past that and it would jump pulling to the left off center another 1/4 clock turn. It did this for about 15 mins and seemed to be getting worse. I was getting concerned when taking a right turn exit off the highway, it all of a sudden jerked the wheel left. The funny thing is after that jerk the steering leveled out

So, was it air in the system or do I have bum steering box? There is still some play in the wheel, minor drift and I was told by my mech that I will be needing ball joints soon, but I do't think ball joints would cause these symptoms.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well part of the problem ended up being that the position of the pitman arm is slightly different on the new box than the old box. I hadnt tighened up the pitman arm enough and it was a tad lower. Once I got my shop to put the impact on it the steering is better. I need to have it aligned now because it is a little squirrely.
 

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pulling after steering box change

Hello everyone this is the first time I have posted here. I have a 95 f150 4x4. This happened to me and I also took it to get the alignment with no avail. I called a mechanic that has done work on my truck and is also a machinist. He said that it is most likely one of the spooling valves is bad inside the box, because of the symptoms of having harder steering to one side and pulling hard. Well I hope this helps someone out there.
 
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